Let's begin with Elizabeth Gilbert.
In her book, Big Magic, Liz says,
"I believe that our planet is inhabited not only by animals and plants and bacteria and viruses, but also by ideas. Ideas are a disembodied, energetic life-form. They are completely separate from us, but capable of interacting with us—albeit strangely... Ideas are driven by a single impulse: to be made manifest. And the only way an idea can be made manifest in our world is through collaboration with a human partner... Therefore, ideas spend eternity swirling around us, searching for available and willing human partners."
She goes on to detail how, more often than not, we are unavailable to accept an idea's invitation. Then, she says,
"But sometimes—rarely, but magnificently—there comes a day when you’re open and relaxed enough to actually receive something... The idea, sensing your openness, will start to do its work on you... The idea will organize coincidences and portents to tumble across your path, to keep your interest keen. You will start to notice all sorts of signs pointing you toward the idea... The idea will not leave you alone until it has your fullest attention. And then, in a quiet moment, it will ask, “Do you want to work with me?"
Lately, I, too, have encountered reoccurring visits from an idea. (An idea for this blog, no less!) This idea has been buzzing and twisting around my head, like a bee to a popsicle. It pops up during the most pedestrian of tasks: as I'm pouring coffee or tying my shoe laces. It has no schedule. It has tapped on my shoulder in the morning and evening, and even during my afternoon slump.
Remembering Liz's description of an idea, I felt that I should be a gracious host and make this idea feel welcome.
So, what's the idea? It's a little whisper that says, "What about blue eyeshadow? What would happen if you tried that?"
(NOT KIDDING! WE'RE DOING THIS!)
THE EVENT: A work-from-home, errands, and movie day. (We're the last ones to see Avengers.)
THE BROKEN RULE: Hold your horses on all of that makeup!
THE OUTFIT: To begin with, I had no blue eyeshadow. I purchased a pallet with two shades of blue (two!) for $7.99 at Target (along with 14 other items I had no intention of purchasing, but did really, really, need including a rather glorious tea towel).
It took me three tries to get the eyeshadow looking purposeful, and not like my eye lids were a casualty of a finger-painting 5 year-old. It turns out, when you buy a rather large, cheap eyeshadow pallet, the likelihood that the colors will blend out nicely is quite low. Eventually, when I felt less like an extra from Blues Clues, I emerged.
I kept the outfit lowkey: jeans, black tank, camo jacket, and blue slides. I thought it was rather funny how my shoes and eyeshadow were the same vibrant color. I'm sure somewhere that's a broken fashion rule, too.
THE EXPERIENCE: After days of feeling depleted, this eyeshadow gave me just what I needed: it made me feel like someone new. The zing of the shadow made my hazel eyes look bright green. For the first time ever, I looked in the mirror and thought, 'I feel very glam rock today.' Plain, regular tasks felt a bit more glam, too. I had a grand time buying dog food and Draino.
That evening, Christian and I were going to see Avengers at my favorite cinema, Cinerama. (They have chocolate popcorn, wine, and comfortable (assigned!) seating! What more could you need!?) As we were driving to the theater, I removed my sunglasses and he noticed the eyeshadow right away. I asked him what he thought of it and he said, "I like it, but it doesn't look like you." Exactly.
Once inside, I enjoyed that my eyeshadow (and shoes!) matched the bright blue decor. As I'm attempting to fit into a wedding dress soon, I skipped the chocolate popcorn, but didn't skip the wine. We settled into our big, comfy, seats and the movie began.
Post-movie, and at home again, it took me several attempts to remove the shadow. That felt appropriate. I wasn't quite ready to put my glam rock persona to bed, either.
THE CONCLUSION: Surprisingly, I've discovered that when I really need a pick-me-up, or a change of pace, or just to feel better in my own skin, clothes don't do the trick. Too often, when I'm feeling low, I gravitate toward soft, often saggy clothing. As you can imagine, nothing described as "saggy" really puts an extra skip into my step. But a bright red lip or bright blue eye really does.
When I conceived this experiment, I didn't anticipate that makeup would play much of a role. This revelation, that makeup can really change my outlook, has caught me quite off guard! So, where in the makeup world do I go next? Bright colors? Dark colors? No colors? Those temporary tattoos from quarter machines? I'd love to hear what you'd like to read.
And before you go -
I'll be back on Sunday with another post - this time I'm emulating a saint. (Seriously!) Until then, as always, come say hey on Instagram.
And one, final, final note - I almost entitled this post "Big Blue Magic" but I thought it sounded too much like a Viagra testimonial.
Ta ta for now!